Estimate 30 miles per hour on most county roads and 5 miles per hour on U.S. Forest Service roads. Or it means spending two extra hours driving when you could be hunting. Warm or close? hunters come But they are discouraged by fairly low hunter success rates, especially for nonresidents, and few opportunities to harvest a cow. Launching the map (The If you were lucky to get out there for some summer scouting, then you’re likely vibrating with anticipation of the hunt ahead. Tent-based hunters with a suitable back-road rig have the flexibility to camp close to a trailhead or other access point. Severe winter weather is what pushes elk down from the high country, so you’ll have to hike through snow even if you don’t need to trudge as far uphill. “The scope of public elk hunting in Montana can be daunting. Washington Some advance hiking at the elevation you plan to hunt will allow you to hunt longer and farther. In Montana, it’s just the opposite. After launching “Hunt Planner Map,” click “Harvest Opportunities 2017 Season,” then “Elk General The air is crisp in the mornings and the sun’s starting to set a little earlier each night. So which do you choose? Midwest and other low-lying areas, hunting at even 4,000 feet requires extra exertion. Even Montanans and others accustomed to mountain hikes start sucking air above about 8,000 feet. BLM and GMU maps, landowner boundaries, aerial and topo maps. Montana elk hunting trip. Most elk hunters know exactly where they’ll hunt this fall. All have their pros and cons. It is every hunter’s responsibility to know the land “Look for hunting districts with high MT hunting units include Upland Game Bird Enhancement Program Access Areas (UGBEP), Block Mgmt Areas, and Mgmt Units. Elk are found in other areas, but most are located within a few miles of these prime locations. Once you’ve identified potential hunting spots in a few hunting districts, assess your physical fitness and ability to travel back roads. “You don’t need to be a gym rat,” Newberg says. If you’re driving here from another state, keep in mind the scale of Big Sky Country. Estimate slope by analyzing contour lines on a topographical map against the scale of miles. Limited Deer Download. Slope, or steepness, also influences hunter mobility. public land. Pp. website (fwp.mt.gov). Where to Hunt Elk in Montana ... After launching “Hunt Planner Map,” click “Harvest Opportunities 2017 Season,” then “Elk General Season,” then “Elk General License.” ... Units with a 10 percent or higher success rate on antlered elk are worthy of a bull hunter’s effort. “That’s a good indication of plenty of elk and decent access,” he says. Jack Ballard of Red Lodge has written hundreds of articles on elk hunting and is the author of Elk Hunting Montana: Finding Success on the Best Public Lands, the second edition of which is scheduled for publication in 2018.. "Kyle” is a 34-year-old hunter from Pasco, in southern Washington. In general, during general rifle elk hunts like we have here in Montana, hunting pressure is the number one determiner of where elk will be. The terrain doesn’t look too steep, elevations are reasonable, and lots of hunting country sits between 7,000 and 8,000 feet. All Rights Reserved. exactly where to hunt. This map has many improvements over the original Hunt Our state contains millions of acres of elk habitat on thousands of square miles of If you live in Montana, focus on a Bingo. Maps for Montana Hunting Districts Select an Antelope Hunting District Show Montana Antelope Hunting Districts Map Montana Antelope Hunting District A215 Montana Antelope Hunting District A300 Montana Antelope Hunting District A301 Montana Antelope Hunting District A310 Montana Antelope Hunting District A311 Montana An But be delighted you have such a challenge.”. A buddy and myself drew the General Elk/Deer combo tag in Montana. little habitat or too many access restrictions. Newberg advises hunters to also identify potential hunting areas by analyzing harvest data from the Hunt Planner on the FWP Success rates in these units are mostly the high teens to mid 20s, which is right in line with Colorado’s general units. Two (fictitious) Once you’ve selected a few hunting The general season antlerless elk damage tag replaces 19 controlled hunts and will replace the need for Landowner Damage Program tags in the areas and during the time periods of the hunts. The state is also known for big public lands bulls. Download and print hunt maps for Montana. Initially our plan was to archery hunt (elk focused) in September and then return in November for the rifle season (deer focused).His dad and two brothers were also planning on hunting the rifle season but did not draw. During my 35-plus years hunting elk, I’ve stayed in motels, RVs, tents (wall and backpack), and even the cargo area of an SUV. success rate. That means hiking at least four miles per day carrying a rifle and daypack. Good for them. They turn their attention farther south, where they notice that HD329 is open to antlerless Core habitat for elk in northeastern Montana is found adjacent to the Missouri River and tributary creeks. With more than 30 million acres of public land, there’s also space to play. On most unpaved county roads you can get by with fairly low clearance, but venturing onto national forest roads often requires a high-clearance backcountry rig. I recommend that moderately fit hunters stick to elk habitat at 8,000 feet or lower and with an average slope of less than 10 degrees. As anywhere, game patterns can vary with pressure, weather, forage and water availability, and other factors. Hiking in snow and carrying a pack are normal parts of elk hunting. For example, a total Another tip, Newberg says, is to look at a Forest Service map of the area you plan to hunt and draw a corridor two miles on either side of any road that allows motorized vehicles. Use various “Base-maps” to look at hunting district boundaries (“Ownership Hybrid—MT”) and terrain features (“USA Topo” or “Ownership Topo—MT”). West of a line from Billings to Glacier National Park, every national forest in Montana holds elk. After setting your expectations for public land hunting, it’s time to choose areas within the national forest. He and a buddy, “Shawn,” have purchased Montana nonresident elk combination licenses. And that’s how you plan your first | Sitemap | Contact Randy Newberg, a Bozeman resident and host of two popular TV shows, Fresh Tracks and On Your Own Adventures, moved to Montana from Minnesota in 1991. But research on what part of Montana? There’s almost too much elk country for a newcomer to take in. for the 2020 hunting season. After launching the “Hunt Planner Map,” use “Map Tools” to examine a topographical map to assess terrain near roads in terms of slope and available trails. By far, the most elk are harvested out of unit 393. Elk aren’t always up in the stratosphere. Forest Service route. Let’s say the closest one to your hunting area is 20 miles away via a county road and another two miles on a The leaves are starting to change from green to shades of red, yellow and orange. Directly across the road is a general unit where we conduct our general tag hunts. “I can’t overemphasize the role of research,” Baumeister says. regulations and statistics. harvest during the regular season. Hunting area includes 3600 acres of private land an… Perhaps elk no longer use the timber you’ve hunted for years and instead are roaming irrigated private land off-limits to public hunting. So far, so good. Time spent There’s nothing better than having a place where you know you’ll find elk. Find public and private hunting land in Montana with onX the #1 hunting GPS and map app. For additional help, I consulted two elk hunting experts. regulation pages will continue to open the original Hunt Planner map For hunters from the What are “good” harvest numbers? Lots of access often means lots of hunters. All of this information is well researched and described for each sub-section of all areas of Montana. I would like to do the same for the General Elk season in Montana, but it is difficult because Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (MFWP) does not report General elk harvests separately.. Montana Still has General Elk Season This story is featured in Montana Outdoors September–October 2017 issue. national forest as close to home as possible. And Check out My DIY Elk Hunting Guide - 3rd Edition. If you’re coming from the Midwest, consider national forests in Montana east of the Continental Divide. But a growing number of hunters, resident and nonresident, don’t know where to go. Oregon is home to two varieties of elk - the Rocky Mountain elk in the eastern part of the state and the Roosevelt’s elk near the Pacific Coast, in the Blue and Cascade Mountain ranges. Baumeister offers a Units with a 10 percent or higher success rate on antlered elk are worthy of a bull hunter’s effort. Most elk on public land live in national forests. Wyoming. Because the pickup will also be transportation to and from Washington, they agree on a roughly 500-mile maximum distance (about eight hours) from home. But it contains deep ruts that, in rain or wet snow, become passable only by a vehicle with tire chains handled by an experienced off-road driver. Montana boasts a healthy elk herd of some 150,000 animals, and the annual harvest figures that may reach mid-20,000s, are second only to Colorado and Wyoming.The state’s striking landscapes are a magnet for every outdoorsperson, and the variety of wildlife presents numerous options for combination hunts (but poses a few problems as well, as will be shown below). Hunters camping in a topper or travel trailer will want to park next to a county road. Elk. Beginning in 2018, the general elk license is now valid for spike bull or antlerless elk in HDs 702, 704 and 705. essential. Map Server. Elk Hunting in Montana HD 391 - Dry Creek-Duck Creek Those portions of Broadwater and Meagher Counties lying within the following-described boundary: Beginning at the intersection of the Missouri River and US Highway 12 and Route 287 north of Townsend, then northerly along the east bank of … Unit 380 is Montana premier permit unit and is the hardest elk draw in the state of Montana. Previously, it was only valid for antlerless elk. recalls what it was like to be a novice at the game, searching for prime elk hunting spots. restrictions that may apply there. 101-109 in S. R. Hieb, ed., elk-logging-roads symp., University of Idaho, College of Forestry, Wildlife and Range Sciences, Moscow. That’s yet another reason why training is The Castle Mountains have abundant big game, including elk, mule and white-tailed deer, moose (migratory), black bear, mountain lion, prairie dog (gopher version), badgers, and antelope. Elk are doing well there, with herd numbers over objective in much of the state. Buy BLM and Forest Service Maps for western public lands. The state is divided into wildlife management units that collectively span millions of acres. They’ll hunt for bulls until Wednesday, then look for cows during the next three days. In many states, the challenge of finding a place to hunt elk comes from too regulations. to Montana... Maybe your aging knees and heart In HD 703 and in the rest of 701, hunters can pursue either-sex elk with a general license. It would give hunters more opportunity to bag an elk — “more time at bat” in Aasheim’s words. Four-wheel drive is essential. 2020 Maps from the Hunt Planner are intended only as General Deer Download. You can begin planning your hunt using Hunters may hold only one general elk license, which can be used for elk as indicated under the “General Elk License” heading on the deer and elk hunting regulations. Second elk tags are not available for the Elk City Zone. district information you are interested in. Elk Hunting Montana thoroughly covers exactly that, while completely focusing on elk hunting on public land. To figure out terrain characteristics in the hunting district(s) you plan to hunt, Planner map. Harvest rates vary considerably from year to year depending primarily on weather (deep snow pushes elk to lower elevations, where they are more accessible to more hunters). Local Government Other Federal Private Date: 5/1/2020 0 25 50 Miles ** This map is for visual use, assistance, and general location only, does not represent a survey, Montana Elk Population Objective. Distance and elevation gain (calculated from contour lines) give a quick estimate of slope. Elk Hunting in Montana HD 141 - Lower Middle Fork That portion of Flathead County lying within the following-described boundary: Beginning at the Glacier National Park Boundary and the Continental Divide (near Marias Pass), then southerly along said divide to USFS Trail 179 (east of Big Lodge Mtn. There’s no getting around the fact that you have to hike, often for hours, up hilly and often steep terrain if you hope to kill an elk. Most harvested elk are calves and cows, and most hunters are happy to take any elk, including those without antlers. It’s almost fall hunting season. Bull hunting is by permit only in HDs 700, 702, 704, 705 and the far western portion of 701. OTC elk tags are available in just about every unit. simple starting place: FWP elk hunting It might seem, based on magazine covers, that everyone in Montana kills a big bull. Antlered elk: Only elk with at least one antler longer than That way you can spend more time in the woods and less on the road. ownership of the area he or she intends to hunt and any land use JOIN OUR MAILING LIST. As a general rule, elk density also increases from east to west. following instructions may seem complicated on paper, but they make sense once you get into the program.) The camper will provide sleeping quarters for the Montana hunt and allow them to easily move camp if necessary. “You want to hunt outside of those corridors, because elk don’t want to be anywhere near motorized vehicles or even the sound of four-wheelers,” he says. Utah offers various hunting opportunities for elk. Current visitors New profile posts Search profile posts. UT Elk (Any Bull) General Season Units - 2019. Map 2 Montana Elk Population Objective by Hunt District. Use the app to hunt for species such as Deer, Bison, and Elk. Shawn has a midsize 4x4 pickup with a pop-up camper and is comfortable driving rough mountain roads. He provides tables showing the number of elk hunters, hunters per elk, trophy potential and the number of “remote/roadless areas”. Elk Units Download. “Places with multiple access points are an advantage for both hunting and game retrieval,” Baumeister says. They should know that each year only one in five elk hunters kills any elk—calf, cow, or bull—and only one in 25 bags a 6x6 or bigger bull. Research with various online mapping resources shows the distance from Pasco to the hamlet of Jackson, Montana (close to both hunt areas), at 470 miles. degree slope (gaining 900 feet in elevation per mile) feels like a significant climb. If you’re driving here from the West Coast, consider hunting closer to the Idaho border. In numerous hunting units, legal elk for the general-season hunts are spike only, but there are some units where any bull is legal. Launching the map provides you with the opportunity to view hunting regulations, harvest statistics, and portions. How does anyone even begin choosing from all that real estate to locate a hunting spot? They both want to kill a bull elk, but have chosen a hunting area that provides a back-up plan for a cow. Though he was a competent deer hunter, Newberg says he “made every rookie mistake in the book” in six years of trial-and-error hunting before killing his first elk. But this is also one of the most heavily pressured units. ), then In most cases, a rental sedan or weekday commuter car won’t take you far enough up mountain roads to get within reasonable hiking distance of where elk live. Antelope Units Download. Ultimately, hunting success depends on a combination of these factors, hunter skill, and luck. Elevation is another consideration. An essential consideration for any elk hunt is where to sleep. It could be you’ve just started hunting elk and don’t have friends and relatives to guide you to a good spot. Montana provides a nice balance between opportunity hunts and harder to draw units with mature bulls. require easier terrain than in the past. A reasonable plan in place, the duo agree to monitor events that might change their plans (such as forest fires) and scout the area more thoroughly before Labor Day via Google maps. Because elk generally stay at least a mile or two from roads—and road hunters—the farther you can get from traffic, the more likely it is that you’ll see animals. harvest statistics, and portions. They devise a scouting trip over Labor Day weekend to check out the area and take a quick look at the country south of Jackson (HD329), where they can also hunt for cows. Just adapting to exercise at high elevation can be tough.”. “A cow starts to look really good on day three of the hunt,” Baumeister says. Click the “Hunting” tab and then click on “Hunt Planner” under the “Plan Your Hunt” heading. “But you need to be fit. harvest of 156 elk divided by 896 hunters multiplied by 100 equals a 17.4 percent I’d say any district with a 20 percent or higher overall hunter-success rate has good potential for either-sex hunting. Or maybe you’re a nonresident hunter coming here for the first time. Still, some hunters will be satisfied with nothing less than a 6x6 bull. either a regional map by species or go right to the hunting Because those figures include experienced hunters who take an elk nearly every year, the success rate of newbies is even lower. “Districts with multiple restrictions usually mean difficulties in terms of access or other issues.” Find either-sex districts in the most recent issue of the FWP elk hunting Get HuntInfo Premium - Click to Learn More (0) Sign-In > X. Consider how much time you have to hunt. Map 2. You might be among them. All ... General Elk Download. But as someone who has hunted elk across western Montana and interviewed dozens of hunters and wildlife biologists, I can provide a method for deciding which of the state’s 148 elk management units to focus your attention on—and then how to decide where in those units to hunt. success rates, ideally ones next to each other,” Newberg says. Elk hunting is a tradition shared by thousands of hunters each fall. Going up or down a 20-degree slope (an 1,800-foot elevation gain per mile) for more than a mile can be brutal even for fit hunters. He still a guide. Click the button below to open and explore the new FWP Hunt As one final piece of advice, Newberg highly recommends first-time elk hunters arrive “at least two days before hunting to acclimatize and adjust plans if necessary.” He also reminds all hunters of a proven aspect of elk hunting: By returning to the same area year after year, you gain invaluable knowledge of the landscape and elk behavior that ups your odds of success. Figure success rates by dividing the total harvest by the number of hunters and multiply by 100. elevation gain against mileage for a user-chosen route. Once you’ve picked a forest, take stock of your expectations. Assess your travel assets The unit consists of a big valley with scattered alfalfa and hay fields and beautiful elk country. These breaks and badlands and low elk density make for rough hunting, so success rates aren’t overly high for a trophy area, but for those who do get into elk, expect to be able to hold out for some truly remarkable bulls, especially in 410. Mountain roads a 10- degree slope ( gaining 900 feet in elevation per mile ) feels like a climb. Directly across the road with herd numbers over objective in much of the state during a six-week archery season five-week... Hoping to find a place where you know you’ll find elk per mile ) feels a... Driving here from another state, keep in mind the scale of big Sky country covers that... 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